What we learned from Indiana

Posted on Posted in Michigan Football

The Michigan football team decided to have a throw-back night in Ann Arbor Saturday night. Paying tribute to Rich Rodriguez with a 63-47 victory over Indiana. The last time Michigan scored over 60 on a Big Ten opponent was against Illinois in a grueling 67-65 victory in 2010. We all know how fun that game was.

The game was a great bounce-back game for Michigan heading into the bye week and an upcoming rivalry game against Michigan State. Before we turn the page on this week, let’s take a look back on the biggest takeaways from the game last night.

1.) Gardner isn’t as bad as it seems.

He has incredible highs and incredible lows, but when things are going well it usually equates to a win. This is the case for Devin Gardner.

Overall, Gardner had a great game. A record-breaking game at that. Any time you can break a Denard Robinson record, you’re obviously having a good day. Gardner finished 21-29 with 503 yards and two touchdowns through the air. He also had 81 yards and three touchdowns on the ground.

Yes, it is Indiana. Yes, he should be doing this all year considering the opponents. But it’s a moral victory. If Gardner can even out the statistical highs and lows and make the mistakes come less frequently, the team will succeed with him. If not, the team will struggle all year. The next big test will come against Michigan State in two weeks.

2.) Jeremy Gallon will be a 1000 yard receiver.

Yesterday was the Jeremy Gallon show. A 369 yard receiving day, a Michigan record, was exactly what he needed to get back on track. Considering the closest he has gotten to 100 yards since week two of the season was last week against Penn State when he finished with 95 yards. Granted the offense has struggled, Gallon will need to make his presence known and get open because he will be covered like a blanket the rest of the way. Gallon got himself right on track to get to 1000 yards on the season. Only needing 169 yards, Gallon needs to average only 33 yards the remaining five games left to end the year.

Number 21 had a number 21-like performance yesterday. He has made Desmond Howard proud.

3.) Offensive line, have a day.

The revolving door that is the offensive line had a better day than last week. It opened the door for Fitzgerald Toussaint to have a monster day on the ground. Fitz finished with 151 yards and four touchdowns on the ground. On top of that, they also allowed enough time for Gardner to function in the pocket. It’s amazing how well this team performs when the offensive line is clicking.

Granted, to put this all in perspective, this is Indiana. This is what the offensive line should be doing all season. But, considering what it has been, I’ll take the moral victory right now. The schedule is only going to get tougher, so the offense will need to step up big time in the coming weeks. The bye week will allow the coaching staff to scheme for Michigan State and for the team to heal their bumps and bruises.

4.) The defense is young and struggling.

Allowing 90 points in two games against Penn State and Indiana isn’t exactly ideal. It is no secret that the team is incredibly young and inexperienced. That will come in time. But, for now, we must suffer through the growing pains.

Indiana exposed some weaknesses in the defensive back groupings. More specifically, freshman cornerbacks Channing Stribling and Jourdan Lewis. Both were picked on a little bit yesterday and were beaten with the long ball. Hopefully, that gets better with time. Jake Ryan is also missed on the defense, whenever he can play 100% healthy, the defense will get better.

5.) This Michigan fan. h/t (Maize & Blue Nation)

Derek Devine
Institutional voice of Alma College during the day, Michigan fanatic at night. Taking TBHR to the next level one post at a time.